Tom CorbettTom Wolf
Chris Kane (m. 2000)
Kathleen Margaret Granahan
June 14, 1966 (age 55) Scranton, Pennsylvania, U.S. (
University of ScrantonTemple University
Pennsylvania Attorney General
Pennsylvania Attorney General since 2013
Mark Granahan, Ellen Granahan Goffer, Joseph Granahan Jr.
Christopher Kane, Zach Kane
Ellen Walsh Gordon, Joe Granahan
Mark Ciavarella, William Lerach, Thomas Capano
Ed Rendell speaks about Pa. Attorney General Kathleen Kane
Kathleen Granahan Kane (born Kathleen Margaret Granahan; June 14, 1966) is an American politician and lawyer who served as the 48th Attorney General of Pennsylvania from 2013 until her resignation in 2016. She was the first female and also the first Democrat ever elected to the position (though both women and Democrats had held the office before it became elective in 1980).
- Ed Rendell speaks about Pa Attorney General Kathleen Kane
- Pa Attorney General Kathleen Kane goes on trial
- Early life and education
- Early career
- 2012 election
- Term of service
- Child sex abuse investigation
- 2016 election
- Indictment and suspension of license to practice law
- Trial conviction and resignation from office
- Personal life
In August 2015, Kane was charged with multiple offenses related to her position as attorney general, including a felony perjury charge, and an array of misdemeanors that included official oppression, obstruction, and related conspiracy charges. In September 2015, the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania suspended Kane's license to practice law, the first such occurrence for a Pennsylvania attorney general. On August 15, 2016, Kane was convicted of all charges, including two felony perjury charges, conspiracy, and obstruction of justice, and she announced her resignation the following day, effective August 17. The judge could have sentenced her to up to 28 years in prison but opted for a sentence of 10–23 months.
Pa. Attorney General Kathleen Kane goes on trial
Early life and education
Born Kathleen Margaret Granahan, Kane grew up on the west side of Scranton, Pennsylvania, where she attended West Scranton High School. Kane received a Bachelor of Science degree in international studies from the University of Scranton in 1988 and J.D. from Temple University Law School in 1993.
Kane was an attorney at Post & Schell P.C., a Philadelphia law firm, prior to 1995 and handled civil cases. From 1995 to 2007, she served as an assistant district attorney for Lackawanna County, Pennsylvania, where she prosecuted hundreds of sex-abuse, elder abuse, murder, assault, rape, public corruption, and fraud cases. In 2007, Kane worked for a private law firm in Scranton, Pennsylvania, and took a position with the 2008 Hillary Clinton presidential campaign.
Kane announced her candidacy for Pennsylvania Attorney General in the 2012 election. She received endorsements from U.S. President Bill Clinton and the Philadelphia Inquirer during the Democratic primary. Her primary opponent, former U.S. Representative Patrick Murphy, was endorsed by former Pennsylvania Governor Ed Rendell and the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. Kane defeated Murphy 53% to 47%. In the general election, Kane won by 14.5 percent over Cumberland County district attorney David Freed who ran unopposed in the Republican primary. The win made Kane the first woman elected State Attorney General in Pennsylvania, and the first Democrat elected to the position since it ceased being an appointed office in 1980. Kane received more votes than President Obama or Senator Casey did in Pennsylvania during the 2012 elections; her total number of votes was then the fourth highest of any politician in Pennsylvania electoral history.
Term of service
Kane appointed former federal prosecutor H. Geoffrey Moulton Jr. to investigate Governor Tom Corbett's handling of the Penn State child sex abuse scandal (an investigation which showed that no wrongdoing by Corbett took place), and brought criminal charges against former turnpike officials (and then dealt plea bargains with the accused parties, which resulted in none of the accused serving any jail time). Kane made national headlines in July 2013, when she refused to defend Pennsylvania's gay marriage prohibition in court.
On March 17, 2014, Kane announced that she had shut down a corruption investigation begun under her predecessor, saying that "the undercover investigation was poorly managed and badly executed, and relied on an undercover operative whose credibility had been compromised." Kane also asserted she had documentation to support her assertion that racism marred the sting. The investigation was following up on reports of corruption among current Philadelphia politicians, all of the suspects belonged to the Democratic Party. In response, the Committee of Seventy called on the state legislature to designate an independent counsel to investigate the closing of the case. Local prosecutors in Philadelphia picked up the case, and secured a number of guilty pleas as well as grand jury indictments.
Child sex abuse investigation
As part of renewed attention in the state to Catholic Church child sexual abuse and cover-up accusations, Kane initiated a statewide grand jury—starting toward establishment in early 2014—and a hotline which garnered another 250 cases to investigate. Some twenty troopers manned the phones and assistant AG Daniel J. Dye led the case in the Diocese of Altoona-Johnstown and was still sifting the other reports in 2016. State Representative Thomas R. Caltagirone, minority chairman of the Judiciary Committee and former opponent of legislation to extend the statute of limitations for the crimes, had come to favor such legislation in 2016.
Kane was mentioned as a potential Democratic candidate for the 2016 U.S. Senate election against Republican incumbent Pat Toomey. However, Kane declined to run, instead announcing that she would seek a second term as attorney general in 2016. She later announced that she would not run for re-election.
Indictment and suspension of license to practice law
Beginning in 2014, a grand jury investigated the leaking of two memos which allegedly came from Kane's office: one from a 2009 grand jury investigation, and an internal memo leaked to the Philadelphia Daily News which outlined details of the 2009 investigation. The leaks came at a time when Kane was under intense criticism for failure to effectively prosecute Democrats, both in a bribery sting investigation in Philadelphia, and a pay-to-play scandal involving the Pennsylvania Turnpike.
On January 21, 2015, it was made public that the grand jury recommended criminal charges related to these leaks against Kane for "perjury, false swearing, official oppression and obstruction of law."
On August 6, Kane was charged by Montgomery County District Attorney Risa Vetri Ferman with one count of perjury, one count of false swearing, three counts of obstructing administration of law, and four counts of official oppression in connection with the grand jury leaks. That same day, Governor Tom Wolf publicly called on Kane to resign. However, Kane denied the charges and announced that she would not resign.
On August 24, Kane was ordered to stand trial on charges she leaked secret grand jury information to the press, lied under oath about it and ordered aides to illegally snoop through computer files to keep tabs on an investigation into the leaks. The leak, it was stated, was done to embarrass rival prosecutors involved in the case. Prosecutors called two witnesses—a top Kane aide and the lead investigator in the case against her—whose testimony paralleled a 42-page probable cause affidavit filed against her.
On September 21, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court unanimously suspended Kane's license to practice law, as a result of the criminal charges. Although the Constitution of Pennsylvania requires the attorney general to be a licensed attorney, the court said in its order that it was not removing Kane from office. Subsequently, Kane appointed former Montgomery County District Attorney and County Commissioner Bruce L. Castor, Jr., a Republican, as Solicitor General of Pennsylvania to assume her executive decision making authority, a position Mr. Castor retained until becoming acting attorney general for a period after Kane resigned, and before Democrat Governor Tom Wolf could appoint Bruce Beemer to the post. Castor remained in service to Beemer, reverting to his role as solicitor general for several weeks before resigning to return to the private sector.
On October 1, prosecutors filed an additional perjury charge against Kane. This second charge related to the alleged violation of a secrecy oath that Kane signed in January 2013, also relating to grand jury leaks.
In continuing as attorney general with a suspended license, Kane delegated legal responsibilities to her top advisers. On November 1, 2015, Kane announced a team of special prosecutors to lead the 'Porngate' investigation at the National Constitution Center.
Trial, conviction, and resignation from office
Kane's criminal trial began on August 8, 2016. One week later, on August 15, she was convicted on all nine counts. The next day, Kane announced her resignation as attorney general, effective August 17. State Solicitor General Bruce Castor, Kane's second-in-command, became acting Attorney General once her resignation took effect. Sentencing for her case took place on October 24, 2016, where she received a term of 10–23 months in prison.
Kane resided in Clarks Summit, Pennsylvania, with her husband Chris Kane, an executive and co-owner in his family's trucking and warehouse company. The couple have two sons. She filed for divorce in Family Court in Lackawanna County, PA, on December 26, 2014. In October 2014, Kane said she was suffering from a concussion she sustained in a car crash.